Ailsa Shipbuilding Company

Ailsa Shipbuilding Company

Ailsa Shipbuilding Company was a shipbuilding company based in Troon, Scotland. The company was founded in 1885 by Archibland Kennedy, the 3rd Marquess of Ailsa.

Spirit of the Scotia

The Ailsa yard fitted out the polar exploration ship "Scotia" for the Scottish National Antarctic Expedition of 1902-04. The "Scotia" sailed from Troon for the South Atlantic on 30 October, 1902. [ [http://www.geo.ed.ac.uk/~rsgs/events/Scotia Royal Scottish Geographical Society : SNAE Centenary ] ]

Paddle steamers

The company built paddle steamers for various companies around the UK, including the New Medway Shipping Companies boats including PS Medway Queen.

Wartime Service

During the First World War, the shipyard built the Royal Navy's first paddle minesweeper of the Bird class. [ [http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.com/~pbtyc/Janes_1919/Index/Index_Sweepers.html HM Ships from As extracted from Jane's Fighting Ships for 1919 ] ] During the Second World War, Ailsa built vessels for the Navy, including several Bangor class minesweepers.

Later Years

Brian Donohoe, Member of Parliament for Ayrshire Central was an apprentice fitter and turner at the Ailsa shipyard from 1965, before becoming a draughtsman in 1969. In 1977, Ailsa was nationalised into the British Shipbuilders Corporation. In 1981, the assets of Ailsa and those of Ferguson Brothers were merged to form Ferguson-Ailsa, Limited. This grouping was split and privatised in 1986, the Ailsa yard being acquired by Perth Corporation as Ailsa & Perth, Limited. Ailsa stopped large-scale shipbuilding in 1988 and finally closed as a shipbuilder in 2003. The company's papers are archived at Glasgow University. The yard has recently been used for ship repair work and the fabrication of large concrete sections for a pier improvement programme in Grimsay, Western Isles [ [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/scotland/highlands_and_islands/6957172.stm BBC News | Scotland | Highland and ISlands | Huge concrete box due for harbour] ]

Sources

* " [http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.com/~pbtyc/Janes_1919/Index/Index_Sweepers.html Janes Fighting Ships 1919] "
* [http://www.coltoncompany.com/shipbldg/statistics/clyde.htm The Decline of Shipbuilding on the Clyde]
* [http://www.geo.ed.ac.uk/~rsgs/events/Scotia/ SNAE Centenary]

Archives

The archives relating to the Ailsa Shipbuilding Company are maintained by the the University of Glasgow Archives Services.

External links

* [http://www.archives.gla.ac.uk/collects/lists/locale/ayrshire.html Glasgow University Archive Services]


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